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Biological Sciences Personal Statement

Growing up in a family involved in the field of public health means I have been surrounded by science from a very early age. I have gradually come to the point where biological sciences is now a huge passion of mine and I would love to pursue it as a career. I have a particular interest in human biology and my scientific curiosity means I have often extended my studies beyond the classroom. Whilst studying immunology at A-Level, a topic that has always intrigued me, I independently studied the virology of diseases such as malaria. Learning about its causes, who it tends to affect and how it can be treated improved my researching skills which will help in later life, especially during my degree. Biology is so essential to the world for a wide range of reasons but, personally, it most importantly contributes to the cure of life-threatening diseases, specifically those that have detrimental effects in developing countries.

My passion for this area of study grew when I chose to write my Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) titled "An Investigation Into the Impact of Stem Cell Therapy From A Medical and Ethical Perspective". Researching a vast amount on stem cell therapy expanded my knowledge of anatomy, general human biology and medical treatment. The EPQ has enabled me to learn referencing techniques and to write long, detailed research reports, which will be a significant help to me at university. In the past year I have had access to Newcastle University's library. Over the summer I visited many times, found and borrowed many books and journals. I specifically loved 'A Companion to Bioethics' (Kuhse and Singer 2012) as the debates on ethical implications of biological research are highly important and fascinating. 'AIDS as a Global Health Emergency' was a chapter I found particularly interesting and I enjoyed reading about the development of preventive vaccines to AIDS.

Recently, I have secured a job at the NHS Business Services Authority as a prescription checking team member. I see thousands of prescriptions which, as a result, has made me familiar with the names of pharmaceutical drugs, complex terminology and the importance of patient confidentiality. These are areas I would never have experienced solely in the classroom at A-Level. I was awarded the bronze Duke of Edinburgh award in October 2013 and this advanced my teamwork skills in both planning and undertaking expeditions. In addition to this, I was a waitress for 2 years. Through both I learned further how to efficiently work in a team and with a range of participants which is necessary for succeeding not only at university, but beyond.

Outside of school I enjoy music which has led me to partake in non-compulsory community service in various settings, such as at schools for children with special needs where I ran workshops in my free time teaching people how to play the steel pans. I also helped run a 'Glee Club' which involved helping 9 to 15 year olds work towards establishing a musical theatre group. These opportunities allowed me to use and refine my leadership and organisational skills. I play the piano, steel pans and sing. I write my own songs, often sing them at buskers' nights and have performed at many school events. In a large steel band I played shows all over the UK: from the Royal Albert Hall, to starring on Blue Peter. This has given me real confidence that I believe I would not have if I hadn't pursued my love for music. At University I hope to join music societies so I can carry on my hobby and have the opportunity to meet new people.

The thought of exploring biology and using my knowledge and passion in research to advance science is utterly thrilling to me and I have absolutely no doubt my intense dedication to the course will make me the ideal candidate to study biological sciences at university.

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Author's Comments

This personal statement allowed me to get offers from: University of Liverpool, University of Edinburgh, University of Leeds, University of Nottingham and University of Sheffield for biological sciences. Sheffield also dropped my entry requirements from AAB to ABB providing I get a B or above in my EPQ and this is my insurance choice. Liverpool is my firm and the entry requirements are ABB for Biological Sciences Integrated Masters (MBiolSci). I got ABB in Maths, Biology and Psychology at AS and am predicted A*AAB at A2.

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